Vols Offer Versatile, Fast-Rising Four-Star Athlete

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    (Photo via @JJPayoute_1 on Twitter)

    Tennessee continues to look for talented athletes in the 2019 recruiting cycle, and they extended an offer to one of the hottest names on the recruiting trail on Wednesday afternoon.

    Jaden Payoute is a play-making athlete from Chesterfield, Virginia. His recruitment has absolutely blown up over the last couple weeks, and the Vols were one of the latest schools to offer him.

    Payoute just picked up a four-star rating on 247Sports, as they ranked him the No. 129 overall player and No. 11 athlete in the 2019 class. He’s added seven offers over the last two days, picking up scholarship offers not only from Tennessee but also from Virginia Tech, Cincinnati, Illinois, Boston College, Charlotte, and Elon over the last 36 hours. He’s received 10 offers since May 27th, adding those seven this week to offers from Pittsburgh, Temple, and Kent State as well.

    Why has Payoute just now exploded onto the scene? Because he was formerly a quarterback who hasn’t found a home at a position yet and hadn’t gone to many camps. But his performance at a one-day camp over the weekend turned heads.

    Payoute allegedly ran a sub-4.4 second 40-yard dash at the camp, and he also won Virginia’s Class 5A state championship in the 100-meter last weekend in track, setting a personal record with a time of 10.67 seconds.

    So, he’s fast. Very fast. And with a frame of 6-foot-3, 195 pounds, he has the makeup of an elite-level athlete. And his film shows off that raw talent at its finest.

    Payoute may not be the most technically sound receiver or defensive back, but there’s definitely talent there. He knows how to use his height to catch passes, and he has a quick burst to escape defenders and separate himself. On defense, he plays with a physicality you don’t expect, and he has solid awareness as well. He can play a multitude of positions, and he’s dangerous at all of them.

    Tracking Payoute’s recruitment will be interesting. He’s taken off over the last few days, and with Tennessee giving him an offer, other Power Five schools will likely come calling too. So far the Vols are his “best” offer in terms of school prestige, but it’s only a matter of time before other schools come and check him out.

    Expect to see Payoute appear at a camp with Tennessee coaches or come to Knoxville on an unofficial visit sometime this summer.

    Nathanael Rutherford is the managing editor and social media manager for Rocky Top Insider. Nathanael graduated from the University of Tennessee and cultivated a passion for the Vols while growing up in Knoxville a mere 10 minutes from Neyland Stadium. He's been a part of the RTI team since November of 2015 and has been the editor of RTI since June of 2017. If he's not talking or writing about Tennessee athletics, he's probably talking about Star Wars.